synergy

Top 10 Ethical + Affordable Clothing & Accessories Brands for Fall

Top 10 Ethical and Affordable Clothing and Accessories Brands for Fall on stylewise-blog.com This post contains some affiliate links

Lucky for us, there are now hundreds of ethical clothing brands making cool clothes in all sorts of innovative ways. But just because it's ethical doesn't mean it's practical. And just because it's practical doesn't mean it's affordable.

To make life a little easier for you as you fill out your fall wardrobe, I've narrowed the list down to my top 10 ethical and affordable clothing and accessories brands. Every brand on this list makes items that are both fashion forward and versatile enough for a busy life, whether you're a student, a mom, a freelancer, or anything else.

All brands offer items priced well below $200, with most items averaging around $40-80.00. When you consider that these items have been made by people who receive a fair wage and work in safe factories using organic and sustainable textiles, that's not too shabby.

CLOTHING:


1. Everlane

Tees, blouses, dresses, backpacks, and shoes made with transparency. Everlane is my go-to for knit cotton tees and dresses.

2. Amour Vert

Minimalist and feminine silhouettes made with ecologically sustainable textiles. I love Amour Vert's contemporary-cut tops.

3. Synergy Organic Clothing

Versatile, organic cotton tops, skirts, and dresses made fairly. Synergy is my first stop for easy-to-wear skirts and dresses. Take an extra 50% off sale items through Labor Day with code, laborday.

4. LA Relaxed

Laid-back tees, skirts, and dresses made with ecologically sustainable textiles. LA Relaxed is for cool girls (and obviously we're all cool girls).

5. Dorsu

Mix and match separates made with factory remnants in Cambodia. Their tees have a great drape.

6. Braintree Clothing

Vintage-inspired tops, bottoms, dresses, and accessories made fairly with ecologically sustainable textiles. Braintree's patterns and textures liven up a basic wardrobe.

ACCESSORIES:

7. FashionABLE

Contemporary jewelry and sustainably-sourced leather bags. $5 off your first purchase when you click through the link above.

8. Sseko Designs

Versatile sandals, loafers, boots, and bags made ethically in Uganda and Ethiopia. My pick for loafers.

9. Etiko

Converse look-a-likes out of Australia made with sustainable rubber, organic cotton, and vegan glues. Their high tops are just what I've been looking for.

10. Oliberte

Fair trade certified flats, loafers, and boots. Try their super comfy boots.

For me, it's important that the clothes and accessories I buy have at at least something in common with the rest of my closet. Having access to brands that know how to make flattering, modern, comfortable pieces makes my life a lot easier.

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Did a miss a brand? Give me suggestions in the comments. 

the moral wardrobe: thrift score

sam edelman outfit
sam edelman petty booties review
thrifted style
Ethical Details: Top - thrifted; Dress (worn as skirt) - c/o Synergy Organic Clothing; Necklace - c/o Bought Beautifully; Boots - thrifted Sam Edelman

I always take a final lap around the thrift store before checking out just to make sure I didn't miss anything. It was my lucky day a couple months ago at Valley Thrift in Cincinnati, because the final lap revealed a practically new pair of Sam Edelman Petty Booties (retail price: $140.00) for $4.00! I'm pretty sure the shop attendant who priced them didn't realize what they had, because they aren't shy about pricing nice things in the $10-20 range at least.

They're a perfect fit and really comfortable despite having such a low toe box and angled toe. I like that they're an alternative to ballet flats and a great option under flared jeans. I know bloggers have been raving about this style for awhile now, but I don't put much stock in the opinions of people who actually like wearing heels - I just assume that everything they wear is uncomfortable - but these are awesome. If you like this style, maybe try your luck on ebay?

inspiration: fair trade florals

florals
florals by stylewiseblog featuring fitted dresses

Featured Items (clockwise from left): Nomads Summer Halter Dress, Mata Traders Primrose Dress, Reformation Peony DressEthica Elysees Dress, Ash & Rose Cherry Blossom Dress

I had settled into a nice minimal wardrobe, content with my Everlane tees and dark wash jeans. But, one day not long ago, the trees in the median of a nearby street suddenly bloomed dazzling pink and now I just want to wear bright florals to chase the last bit of winter away. 

Solid colors have their place - and they're essential building blocks if you're someone inclined to prints - but it's a season for pattern and I'm so excited to dress a bit more feminine after being on a menswear kick for the past few seasons. In reality, I'll be depending on thrifting and accessorizing for floral accents. I don't think I can justify overturning my wardrobe (or my budget) to make way for half a dozen new dresses.

Oh, and by the way, I'm using the Style Wise facebook page to post interesting articles and fair trade sales. There's a lot of interesting stuff happening in the world of retail right now.

the moral wardrobe: a little red dress

red dress
red dress
Details: Dress - c/o Synergy via FloydFest; Shoes - thrifted; Earrings - thrifted; Blazer - thrifted

People often don't realize that I have insecurities about my figure because they assume that my relatively small frame guards me from body-shaming. But it definitely feels like a risk to wear things that are clingy around the hips. I wore this Synergy dress in the FloydFest sustainable fashion show over the summer and they kindly gave it to me afterwards. What I enjoyed most about my modeling adventures this year is how they forced me out of my comfort zone. I got to pretend I was someone else for those quick strides down the catwalk, and that was enough to help me realize I was less boxed in than I thought. 

Here's to embracing our bodies and stepping out of our comfort zones!

fair finds august

faves
faves by fracturedradiance featuring gold dipped jewelry

I'm anxiously awaiting the unveiling of fall arrivals from my favorite ethical retailers, but there are still plenty of things to enjoy. I know Birkenstocks have been a big deal this spring/summer season, but I only really decided they were cool again when Dakota Fanning said they were in the September issue of InStyle (yes, I realize that's lame). I like the black triple strap style. I've also been obsessing over Dogeared jewelry for several months and plan on buying myself their Eye Ring for my birthday (or I could let Daniel purchase it for me).

Speaking of birthdays, Daniel's is tomorrow! Hooray!

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floydfest style revolution

This weekend, Daniel and I headed off to the boonies of Floyd, VA for FloydFest, a folk music festival in the mountains. I got free tickets in exchange for modeling in the first annual FloydFest Fashion Show. The festival prides itself on sustainability, so all garments featured in the show were handmade, fair trade, and organic. It was great to be able to touch and see items from the headlining brand, Synergy Organic Clothing. I wasn't sure how flattering their stretchy, organic knits would be, but it turns out they look good on everyone.

The show's aesthetic was inspired by The Hunger Games, complete with fire pits at the end of the runway and epic opening music. Models were grouped as District or Capitol. Guess which one I represented:

mod1floydfest style revolution the hunger games

I really enjoyed wearing cool outfits and walking the runway (I got to wear a ball gown made of feathers, complete with feather gloves and a headdress!), but I don't think I'll go back next year. Big festivals in the middle of nowhere aren't my thing. It's a mixture of geographical isolation and social over-stimulation. I wouldn't say I'm agoraphobic exactly, but I'm definitely agorannoyed.

I'll post outfit shots if I can get my hands on them!

I'm just happy to have a long stretch of being at home after a month of endless traveling.

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an ethical outfit: flea market


summer



summer by fracturedradiance featuring a stripe skirt

I would wear this outfit to brunch at Bluegrass Grill followed by a meandering walk around the FleaVille flea market that runs once a month downtown. Then I could walk over to midtown for samples at Feast and lunch at one of the many local restaurants. Then I would go home and take a nap in the back yard. A perfect day.

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an ethical outfit: farmers' market


newlook



newlook by fracturedradiance featuring Clinique

The one good thing about winter (besides the temporary thrill of snow) is that it makes warm weather feel like paradise. I'm having fun creating virtual outfits fit for all kinds of outdoor activities.

I don't attend the Saturday Farmers' Market as often as I should, but I want to make sure to go when my friend from Florida comes to town in a couple weeks. Local produce, food trucks, flowers, people watching, a guy who makes "Australian" pies - even if we don't buy anything, it's fun to look around.

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